By Jim Amato

Rafael Pineda was a very fine fighter. He is a former champion who most fans remember as being outclassed by a prime Pernell Whitaker (who wasn’t back then). In reality Pineda was a contender from the late 1980′s to 2004. Rafael was a very dangerous fighter !

Pineda turned pro in 1986 and won his first 20 fights. In 1989 he suffered his first loss when he was stopped in five rounds by Mark Breland for the WBA welterweight title. Pineda claimed he was thumbed and refused to continue. Rafael then won six straight bouts and in 1991 he challenged Roger Mayweather for the IBF light welterweight title. In a huge upset, Pineda destroyed Roger in the ninth round. Rafael would make one successful defense before his 1992 loss to Whitaker.

Pineda would stay of the ring for four years but upon returning he won five straight contests before losing in 1999 to Emmett Linton .Rafael scored a another upset in 2001 when he halted the highly respected Oba Carr in six rounds. In 2002 Pineda lost a seventh round technical decision to Cory Spinks due to a accidental head butt. Then in 2004 Rafael lost a split decision to Zab Judah in a WBO welterweight eliminator. That was his last fight. He was a world class fighter until the end. Pineda retired with a very respectable 38-6 record. This powerful right hand bomber scored 31 knockouts. He was stopped only once in his career.

Jim Amato

Filed under: Boxing

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